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Petyr Baelish, Blackfyre heir?

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A couple of weeks ago, I posted this in a comment in a broader discussion. Today seems to be a slow day in the forum and I thought it might be worth giving this idea its own thread.

Above the hearth hung a broken longsword and a battered oaken shield, its paint cracked and flaking.

The device painted on the shield was one Sansa did not know; a grey stone head with fiery eyes, upon a light green field. "My grandfather's shield," Petyr explained when he saw her gazing at it. "His own father was born in Braavos and came to the Vale as a sellsword in the hire of Lord Corbray, so my grandfather took the head of the Titan as his sigil when he was knighted."

(ASoS, Sansa VI)

Are there Blackfyre hints in Littlefinger's arc?

The sword above the hearth could be a black fire hint - hearths turn black from soot. Could the sword be the ancestral Targaryen blade Blackfyre?

The giant's head on the shield isn't gold, but it does seem to echo the Maelys the Monstrous story, with the giant "skull" being brought back to Westeros. I'm guessing that Maelys and Baelish might be descended from two different sons of Daemon or of Bittersteel.

Sansa doesn't give us much detail, but the sword could be Chekhov's gun: if the sword is broken to the point that part of the blade has snapped off, the dagger (with dragonbone handle) that the catspaw brought to Bran's bedchamber might have been made with Valyrian steel from this sword.

If the catspaw was sent by a Blackfyre descendant, the motive for attacking Bran might have been the knowledge that Bran was important to Bloodraven; someone Bloodraven needed to sustain the status quo in Westeros. Bittersteel's descendants would want to undermine Bloodraven as much as they would want to take the Iron Throne. (Maybe one goal is necessary to achieve the other.)

Even if the catspaw's dagger was not forged from a broken blade of Blackfyre, it had the dragonbone handle and it belonged to Petyr Baelish at some point. He could have sent the catspaw.

Another "black fire" hint in Littlefinger's immediate vicinity: the Kettleblacks work for him. More soot symbolism. Someone pointed out in a recent thread that GRRM invented and used a Westeros-specific saying about the crow calling the raven black; the familiar English idiom is "like the pot calling the kettle black." There may be a little hint here about Blackwood vs. Blackfyre.

Bloodraven sits in a weirwood throne in his cave beyond the Wall. Littlefinger has maneuvered himself into protector of the Vale, with the weirwood throne in the great hall at the Eyrie.

Littlefinger wears a plum doublet at two key points early in the story - while watching Joffrey shoot hares with a crossbow, he has a conversation with Tyrion about how one gets tired of one's own colors. Hares are associated with Daenerys and her "floppy ears," the attire she wears when she wants to look like a monarch. (The "floppy ears" phrase was suggested to her by Brown Ben Plumm.) Back in AGoT (Eddard XII), the plum doublet also appears in a meeting of Petyr with Ned Stark where Petyr notes that Ned is reading the book describing Westeros nobles and their children. I'm still working on the plum symbolism, but I think it might be connected with the violet eyes of the Targaryen / Valyrian descendants. (In the scene with Ned, Littlefinger is also on his way to dinner with Lady Stokeworth, who hopes to marry him to her daughter Lollys, who will be pregnant in the next book. The Stokeworths are linked to control of the Red Keep; plums and pregnancy are also linked.)

With Petyr's banking connections, I wouldn't be surprised if he also has backing from the Rogare family. Viserys II married a Rogare, so all of his descendants would have the same Rogare heritage. If the Rogare family sided with the Blackfyre faction (or whatever Targ branch Baelish is in), the broken sword above the hearth might be the missing Valyrian steel blade Truth. This would be wonderful literary irony as Baelish is teaching Sansa to lie as soon as she arrives at his keep, so a broken Truth would be particularly apt.

A lot of this detail came in the later books, but I can see where GRRM might have been setting up Petyr Baelish as a major antagonist at the beginning of the series.

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2 hours ago, Bernie Mac said:

Littlefinger's father and granddfather were both around before the Reynes fell out with Lannisters and before they became extinct. there would be no reason for them not to mention this connection as it would add more esteem to their name, especially as Roger Reyne was one of the leaders in the nine penny war where Littlefinger snr and Hoster Tully bonded. 

Are you saying that the Reynes are somehow connected to the Blackfyres? My post was about a Baelish / Blackfyre connection.

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My tinfoil theory, is that Littlefinger's great grandfather and Kettleblacks are from Golden Company, and LF used to be one of Varys' little birds.

Probably great grandfather, the one that is supposedly from Braavos, was for some reason evicted from Golden Company, and that's why he migrated to Westeros, and his grandson later fought against Blackfyres, during War of Ninepenny Kings.

Varys is grandson or great grandson of Bittersteel, and thus descendant from female line of Blackfyres (him and his sister Serra, wife of Illyrio). Varys arrived to Westeros in 70s to prepare 7K for Sixth Rebellion of Blackfyres. But his plans were ruined by Robert's Rebellion, and had to be postponed for many years after that. In the beginning LF was working for Varys, and probably was loyal to him. But with passage of time, when he himself gained more power (mainly thanks to his affair with Lysa, behind Jon Arryn's back, with her assistance he even managed to join Small Council), he decided to play his own Games of Thrones. He went against Varys, and is using, what he knows about Blackfyres and their plans, to make himself, if not King of 7K, then at least his Hand, instead of Varys. Because probably Varys is intending to make fAegon next King of 7K, and be his Hand.

Petyr is using mockingbird as his personal sigil. I think, that it's a symbol of his victory over Varys. He was one of Varys' little birds, he was taught, trusted, and given access to sensitive information about Blackfyres and their plans, and he used his status as Varys' disciple, for his own gain and benefit, and managed to outsmart his great teacher. So LF's mockingbird is mocking Varys.

Also in that scene from above - LF didn't said, that the sword is also his grandfather's, he said only about the shield. So could be, that the sword belonged to LF's great grandfather. And the sword was broken by commanders of Golden Company, when they evicted him.

Petyr is from the same generation as Rhaegar, so his father was about the same age as Aerys II, grandfather like Jaehaerys II, and great grandfather like Aegon V. So Petyr's great grandfather lost his "membership" in GC sometime during Egg's reign. It is known, that Hoster Tully has met Petyr's father during War of Ninepenny Kings in 260 (8 years prior Petyr's birth), both of them fought for Targaryens. Previous conflict between Blackfyres and Targaryens happened in 236 - Duncan the Tall killed Daemon III Blackfyre, and Aegor Bittersteel managed to escape, supposedly taking Blackfyre sword with him back to Essos. Petyr is his father's sole child, he was born in 268. So Baelysh Sr married between 260 and 268. Possibly, that in 260 he was in his late teens or early twenties, so he was born sometime in 40's.

Thus this timeline fits into possibility, that Baelysh I (of Golden Company), in 236 participated in Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres, maybe he was one of GC's generals, or Daemon III's protector. He failed Blackfyres, but either prior that he had hight position in GC, or during that battle he did something, that gained him partial forgiveness for his failure. For example, he helped Bittersteel to escape from battlefield. Whatever that achievement was, for it he was spared, and instead of execution, was evicted from GC, together with his son (Petyr's grandfather, Baelysh II), that probably also fought with him against Targaryens.

Baelysh I (sellsword from Braavos) is from the same generation as Aegon V, and during Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres, Aegon's three sons (Duncan, Jaehaerys and Daeron) went to battlefield together with him. The youngest of them was only 8 years old at that time, and the oldest was 16 or 12. If Aegon has brought his children to battlefield, then most likely Baelysh I at that time also had children/child of approximately the same age as Egg's children, or even older. Because Egg got married, when he was 20, which is a bit late, compared with average age for marriage in those times. So Petyr's grandfather in 236 was approximately 16 years old.

After Baelysh I and Baelysh II (Petyr's grandfather) were evicted from Golden Company, they returned to Westeros, and sometime between 236 and 240's, Baelysh II got married, and Baelysh III was born (Petyr's father), and in 260 he participated in War of Ninepenny Kings on Targaryen side. If Baelysh I was exiled by Blackfyres from Essos, then it's understandable why Baelysh II raised his own son hating Blackfyres, even though previously, he and Baelysh I fought for them. And later, when Varys arrived to Westeros, planning Six Rebellion of Blackfyres, he offered an amnesty to Baelysh III (Petyr's father), and offered him membership in Golden Company, which was previously taken from his father and grandfather. Petyr's father outwardly agreed to Varys' offer, and even given his son to Varys, to become one of his little birds. But also he warned Petyr not to trust to Blackfyres, and to use them, instead of letting them use him. So even though Petyr was pretending to be loyal to Varys, he planned to betray him, from the very begining of their collaboration.

Does it make sense? 

Edited by Megorova

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Or other option, is that Baelish I was executed by Golden Company, and his son was evicted from their ranks, and exiled from Essos, and they gave him only his father's sword, but broke it prior giving it to him. So Baelysh II arrived back to Westeros alone, and later made "grey stone head with fiery eyes, upon a light green field" his shield, and it means something anti-Blackfyre. He raised his own son, Baelish III as Targaryen loyalist, and made him fought against Blackfyres during War of Ninepenny Kings.

Maybe that head with fiery eyes on green field, is cut off head of Baelish I, on green grass. Probably Baelish II was forced to look at his father's execution. They cut off his head with his own sword, and broke that sword, and gave its remnants to his son (Petyr's grandfather). Or something like that.

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Petyr has systematically torn down the Starks as well as the Arryns and the Tullys.  Varys tolerated him.  All this points to him being a Targ loyalists.  Though I doubt he is.  My opinion, the story of a love sick little boy who got rejected making something of himself and getting his revenge is the better story.

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On 6/21/2018 at 7:08 PM, Seams said:

The sword above the hearth could be a black fire hint - hearths turn black from soot. Could the sword be the ancestral Targaryen blade Blackfyre?

The giant's head on the shield isn't gold, but it does seem to echo the Maelys the Monstrous story, with the giant "skull" being brought back to Westeros. I'm guessing that Maelys and Baelish might be descended from two different sons of Daemon or of Bittersteel. 

Good catch.

Broken sword could also refer to Second Sons - it's in the company banner.  Commander of the Second sons Mero called himself Titan's bastard.  Maybe it hints that Titan (sellsword Baelish) is bastard of some member of the Second sons.

To me, Baelish connection to Second sons is more palpable, than one with Golden company, but one doesn't exclude the other.  Bitersteel served with second sons before he had founded Golden Company.

Brightflame also served with Second Sons. He was of appropriate age to be father of sellsword Baelish (Petyr's great grandfather).

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On 6/23/2018 at 10:45 AM, The Lord of the Crossing said:

Petyr has systematically torn down the Starks as well as the Arryns and the Tullys.  Varys tolerated him.  All this points to him being a Targ loyalists.  Though I doubt he is.  My opinion, the story of a love sick little boy who got rejected making something of himself and getting his revenge is the better story.

It is a good story. The "self made" image has certainly worked for Baelish, causing people to be impressed by him.

But why did Hoster Tully foster him in the first place? We have seen wards taken on as hostages or to create alliances with important allies. In the case of Sweetrobin, people also want to prevent him from falling under the power of lords or others they do not trust. I can't recall someone taking on a ward out of charity for lower nobles, which would be the case if Petyr were truly just the son of an obscure lord with worthless land on the Fingers.

What if a betrothal to Catelyn was ruled out not because Petyr was low-born, but because there had been a secret betrothal arranged, like the plan for Arianne and Viserys? Prince Doran hid the alliance with the royal-in-exile behind numerous fake attempts at betrothal efforts with unsuitable prospects, even fooling Arianne herself. Maybe Tully knew that Baelish had a different marriage prospect arranged, but no one was allowed to know about it, including Baelish.

If Tully and others were secretly bringing up Baelish as a possible replacement for Aerys or Rhaegar (particularly when Rhaegar was young, and didn't look like a strong future leader) the whole plan may have fallen apart when Arryn and Baratheon and Stark allied to bring down Aerys and Robert ended up on the throne. Tully couldn't go against the Starks with that Catelyn / Ned betrothal in place, and the alliance backing the new Baratheon regime may have seemed too strong to challenge. Or the reason for cultivating an Aerys alternative no longer mattered because Aerys was gone.

At which point the secret betrothal for Petyr (if there was such a thing) would have become moot, too.

We do have an example of Gendry moping around because he thinks Arya has rejected him because she is high born and he is low born. (I think there is a scene at The Peach where this is made explicit.) Maybe Petyr didn't know of his own secret Targ origins at the time of his duel with Brandon Stark, and he was truly embittered by the loss of his true love. If the irony of the Gendry / Arya scene carries over to the Petyr / Catelyn situation, this could be another hint about royal heritage for Baelish.

This is a bit speculative, but I think GRRM is a little too cynical to create a "rags to riches" character who got his revenge on the high born simply by working hard and being a skillful businesses man. Based on what I know of his writing, it's easier for our author to believe in dragons, shadow weapons and a man who lives with tree roots growing through his face than to believe in capitalism as a form of redemption. Speaking of dragons, I think Petyr's legendary skill at producing "dragons" -- the gold coins -- is a more a clue about his Targ heritage than a rags-to-riches success story.

3 hours ago, Pukisbaisals said:

Good catch.

Broken sword could also refer to Second Sons - it's in the company banner.  Commander of the Second sons Mero called himself Titan's bastard.  Maybe it hints that Titan (sellsword Baelish) is bastard of some member of the Second sons.

To me, Baelish connection to Second sons is more palpable, than one with Golden company, but one doesn't exclude the other.  Bitersteel served with second sons before he had founded Golden Company.

Brightflame also served with Second Sons. He was of appropriate age to be father of sellsword Baelish (Petyr's great grandfather).

I love Baelish as a possible Brightflame descendant. That would allow for the possibility that he is a legitimate Targaryen, not a bastard, and that he has a pretty reasonable claim as the Targ heir.

Another possible symbolic Targ / Baelish connection: I have seen people in this forum theorizing that either Sansa or Arya will be the one to kill the "giant" in the castle made of snow, based on the prophecy of the Ghost of High Heart. Based on the clues in the ADwD, Ugly Little Girl chapter, I think it will be Arya, using an agent of some kind, killing a Targ descendant. And that Targ descendant will be someone who specializes in handling coins.

In that chapter, Arya is assigned to kill an old man who does business in the Purple Harbor. In my recent explorations of colors, I've come to believe that the color purple (also referred to as "plum color") is a Targ clue, because of the violet eyes associated with Targaryens, among other associations. Petyr Baelish wears a plum-colored doublet in a couple of revealing scenes. The Purple Harbor is a special, reserved, cleaner harbor where only selected people can do business or dock ships. Arya uses a poisoned coin to kill her target, slipping the coin into the spilled contents of a purse she pretends to try to steal. She knows that the owner of the purse will use the coin to pay the old man and (it is implied) that the old man might bight the coin to find out whether it is real gold, leading to his death by poisoning.

This could be an allegory of Joffrey Baratheon's death, I realize, depending which version of Joffrey's poisoning you believe. But I think it foreshadows the death of Petyr Baelish, the low-key, behind-the-scenes manipulator of gold dragons. GRRM does love irony, and it would be good irony if Petyr brought about the death of Joffrey and Petyr eventually dies in a similar way.

I just spent a little time on the Corbrays, because I think they will be a key to uncovering Petyr's secret past. What secrets do Lyonel and Lyn and Lucas hold about the mysterious Littlefinger and his origins?

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19 minutes ago, Seams said:

Petyr Baelish wears a plum-colored doublet in a couple of revealing scenes.

Petyr was in plum and yellow. The same color combination is on coats of arms of houses Plum and Payne. Payne sigil includes golden coins.

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Petyr doesn't look like Targaryen or Blackfyre. He is short, weak, dark-haired, and his eyes are not Valyrian-colored. Targaryens are mostly tall, strong, and beautiful, and Petyr isn't any of that. I will be surprised, if he will turn out to be another secret "dragon". It's obvious, that he does have some sort of connection to people in Essos (Tears of Lys, family of Kettleblacks, his great grandfather was from Braavos, he obviously knows about fAegon (seems that he was gathering Targaryen banners for him, as a gift, or something like that, to show him, that he is on his side, Targaryen loyalist), so he also has informants in Essos). Which doesn't necessary mean, that he is one of Blackfyres.

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21 hours ago, Megorova said:

Petyr doesn't look like Targaryen or Blackfyre. He is short, weak, dark-haired, and his eyes are not Valyrian-colored. Targaryens are mostly tall, strong, and beautiful, and Petyr isn't any of that.

Appearance doesn't mean much n this case, because Petyr is separated from his Bravosi (presumable Targ or Blackfyre ) ancestor by 3-4 generations. Besides, even firstborn of Targaryen husband and non-Targaryen wife couple usually inherits non-Targaryen traits.

But if Littlefinger can prove his trueborn descent from Targs, he would still have a claim, regardless to  an extent his dragon blood was diluted.

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@Pukisbaisals

I think, that maybe Petyr is descendant of Aegon IV Targaryen.

Falena Stokeworth was Aegon's first mistress. Could be, that her daughter, Jeyne Lothston, was Aegon's daughter. Later Jayne also became Aegon's mistress. I think, that she secretly gave birth to Aegon's son, between 178 and 180. This son was the Bastard of Harrenhal, that in 193 was defeated by Ser Arlan of Pennytree, in the melee at a tourney, held at KL. Later he became one of captain-generals of Golden Company, and died in 236, during Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres. His comrades brought his severed head to his son, and presented it to him on his father's shield. It's from ancient Spartan saying - Come back with your shield, or on it. His shield was mix - black bat of Lothstons on green field of Stokeworths.

 

Petyr's family tree (Edit: previously missed one generation)

Aegon IV Targaryen + Falena Stokeworth = Jeyne Lothston

Aegon IV Targaryen + Jeyne Lothston = Bastard of Harrenhal

Bastard of Harrenhal + wife or mistress = Sellsword from Braavos

Sellsword from Braavos + wife or mistress = Petyr's grandfather, hedge knight

Hedge knight + wife or mistress = Petyr's father

Petyr's father + wife or mistress = Petyr Baelish.

 

Varys' family tree:

Aegon IV Targaryen + Barba Bracken = Aegor Bittersteel Rivers

Bittersteel + Calla Blackfyre = Blackfyre from female line

Gerold Lannister + Rohanne Weber = 4 sons, and Jenny of Oldstones

Blackfyre from female line + Jenny of Oldstones = Varys and Serra

 

Varys is Spider, because his maternal grandmother is Webber, the Red Widow. Rohanne is the Ghost of High Heart, and Blackfyres kidnapped her daughter Jenny, because Rohanne is a powerfull prophet, and they wanted to get her blood for their family.

I have read your theory about Rohanne, and I got an additional idea to my original theory, about Varys' ancestry.

Ancient lost city Lyber could actually be Oldtown (because of its library. Lyber - library). According to legend about Lyber, it's "the site of a bloody and endless war between the acolytes of a spider goddess and those of a serpent god." There are acolytes in Oldtown. House Webber is from The Reach. Oldtown is also in The Reach.

So how to end the endless war between spider and serpent? - Marry them, and their child will have power of them both.

Spider goddess / blood of Webber witch + Serpent god / blood of dragonseeds Bittersteel and Blackfyre = Varys.

Edited by Megorova

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9 hours ago, Megorova said:

I think, that maybe Petyr is descendant of Aegon IV Targaryen.

Falena Stokeworth was Aegon's first mistress. Could be, that her daughter, Jeyne Lothston, was Aegon's daughter. Later Jayne also became Aegon's mistress. I think, that she secretly gave birth to Aegon's son, between 178 and 180. This son was the Bastard of Harrenhal, that in 193 was defeated by Ser Arlan of Pennytree, in the melee at a tourney, held at KL.

yes, that's a possibility.

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

Later he became one of captain-generals of Golden Company, and died in 236, during Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres. His comrades brought his severed head to his son, and presented it to him on his father's shield. It's from ancient Spartan saying - Come back with your shield, or on it.

Is it supported by some textual evidence?

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

His shield was mix - black bat of Lothstons on green field of Stokeworths. 

I doubt it. Lothston bastard's shield would be white or yellow bat on black field. If he was Aegon's bastard he would probably used some dragon symbol, o maybe a combination of bat and dragon (like in Bittersteel's arms - fire-spitting winged horse). According to your theory, he hadn't Lothston blood at all, but maybe he believed his mother was Lothston.

And if he wanted to use sigil of Stokeworth (his grandma's), he probably would have used lamb or chalice, not background color.

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

Sellsword from Braavos + wife or mistress = Petyr's father

Petyr's father + wife or mistress = Petyr Baelish. 

plus one generation - Sellsword was great grandfather to Petyr.

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

So how to end the endless war between spider and serpent? - Marry them, and their child will have power of them both.

Spider goddess / blood of Webber witch + Serpent god / blood of dragonseeds Bittersteel and Blackfyre = Varys.

I like the idea of Varys descent from Blackfyres and Webbers. But Rohanne is not necessarily involved. There were other Webbers, for example, Rohanne's uncle who was married to Rowan. Rohanne's father was Targ loyalist, but her uncle might have joined Blackfyres with hope to take Cold Moat from Rohanne. Webber descendant could marry Blackfyre woman, o Blackfyre descendant could marry Webber's daughter.

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

Rohanne is the Ghost of High Heart, and Blackfyres kidnapped her daughter Jenny, because Rohanne is a powerfull prophet, and they wanted to get her blood for their family.

to me it is to stretched. Ghost of High Heart was albino. The only thing she and Rohanne have in common - low height. I would rather agree Ghost and Jenny are related to cranongmen, particularly Reeds (dragonfly in reeds theory).

9 hours ago, Megorova said:

Ancient lost city Lyber could actually be Oldtown (because of its library. Lyber - library). According to legend about Lyber, it's "the site of a bloody and endless war between the acolytes of a spider goddess and those of a serpent god." There are acolytes in Oldtown. House Webber is from The Reach. Oldtown is also in The Reach.

I tlike this idea.  Maesters are hostile to dragons and magic, they wage a sort of secret war against serpent. There is also a maester who challenges them ("the sheep") - Marwyn. So there are "acolytes" in Oldtown who oppose serpent - dragons - Targs and those who favor them. I never noticed any textual relation between maesters and spiders. Maybe all network of maesters in service of noble houses and their ravens can be viewed as sort of gigantic web, used to  control information.

There is a house Lyberr in Reach. I wonder where is their seat located - maybe close to Coldmoat and Webbers, maybe close to Oldtown and acolytes?

 

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11 hours ago, Megorova said:

I think, that maybe Petyr is descendant of Aegon IV Targaryen.

Falena Stokeworth was Aegon's first mistress. Could be, that her daughter, Jeyne Lothston, was Aegon's daughter. Later Jayne also became Aegon's mistress. I think, that she secretly gave birth to Aegon's son, between 178 and 180. This son was the Bastard of Harrenhal, that in 193 was defeated by Ser Arlan of Pennytree, in the melee at a tourney, held at KL. Later he became one of captain-generals of Golden Company, and died in 236, during Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres. His comrades brought his severed head to his son, and presented it to him on his father's shield. It's from ancient Spartan saying - Come back with your shield, or on it. His shield was mix - black bat of Lothstons on green field of Stokeworths.

Petyr's family tree:

Aegon IV Targaryen + Falena Stokeworth = Jeyne Lothston

Aegon IV Targaryen + Jeyne Lothston = Bastard of Harrenhal

Bastard of Harrenhal + wife or mistress = Sellsword from Braavos

Sellsword from Braavos + wife or mistress = Petyr's father

Petyr's father + wife or mistress = Petyr Baelish.

Very nice! This and your Varys pedigree would tie up some loose ends and explain some hidden motives. Lots to ponder here.

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Having Littlefinger's family come from Braavos is certainly an eyebrow-raising choice from the author, especially in a story where bloodlines and ancestry are apparently so important.

As a note, before I go into this, I don't put much weight into what I'm suggesting below, so read it with a grain of salt:

So a powerful group (powerful in the mythic sense) whose influence is entirely missing from the story is the Moonsingers, the psychic founders of Braavos. A major problem with the "Littlefinger's Catspaw" hypothesis is that Littlefinger isn't there at Winterfell to direct an assassin when the unexpected fall of Bran presents an opportunity. But if we assume that Littlefinger has some psychic ability, either the ability to forsee the fall or to communicate with his agents over vast distances, the problem vanishes. So maybe Littlefinger is descended from Moonseers and carries their gift?

I've suggested before that Littlefinger practices a form of "sex magic" like the Graces and the Red Priests seem to, using sex to initiate a psychic link. Baelish had a near-death experience when he was young, something that seems to be a requirement for the awakening of psychic powers, and it's worth noting that he had sex during the fevered recovery from his wound. Perhaps he's so adept at this sex magic that his brothel has become a sort of a "whore-net", his whores are like weirwoods, the johns like ravens, and himself in the middle like the three-eyed crow.

It does explain why he seems to be so adept at manipulating Tyrion in particular.

As noted, I don't feel very strongly about this hypothesis, and tend to prefer the more mundane explanations for all of this stuff.

Edited by Damon_Tor

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2 hours ago, Pukisbaisals said:
12 hours ago, Megorova said:

Later he became one of captain-generals of Golden Company, and died in 236, during Fourth Rebellion of Blackfyres. His comrades brought his severed head to his son, and presented it to him on his father's shield. It's from ancient Spartan saying - Come back with your shield, or on it. 

Is it supported by some textual evidence?

No, though I got this idea, after reading Sansa's description of that shield.

"The device painted on the shield was one Sansa did not know; a grey stone head with fiery eyes, upon a light green field."

It doesn't seems right, to be depiction of the Titan. Sansa is an educated highborn, shouldn't she be able to recognize the Titan, if it was really him on that picture? Also if it's the Titan, then why does he have a fiery eyes? And why is it only the head, depicted on that shield? And also why is it on green background? If it's Titan's head, then shouldn't it be depicted on background of blue sky? So why the background is green? There's no greenery in Braavos. But even if there was, still the Titan's head is way higher than trees or grass, so it should be on font of sky, not something green. Unless sky in Braavos is green, and as far as I remember, it isn't.

So it got me thinking, that the head is not the Titan's head. It's an actual head. Someone's cut off head, depicted on a green font. So the head was brought to his family, in or on something green, like a piece of green cloth, or on top of green shield. Petyr's great grandfather possibly was from same generation as Aegon V, and maybe he or his father fought on side of Blackfyres during their Fourth Rebellion.

Now why is he supposedly from Egg's generation, and why his father died during 4th Rebellion of Blackfyres:

1. Rhaegar - 2. Aerys - 3. Jaehaerys - 4. Aegon V - 5. Maekar I.

If Maekar wasn't killed during Peake's Uprising, then in 236, during 4th Rebellion of Blackfyres, he would have been 55-59 year old, and would have fought on battlefield alongside Egg, and his three grandsons. For example in 236, Bittesteel was 64 years old, nevertheless he did participated in that battle. So if the Bastard of Harrenhal was Aegon IV's son and grandson, and he was born in 178-180, then in 236 he was 56-58 year old - well past his prime, and thus died on that battlefield.

1. Petyr - 2. Petyr's father (he participated in War of Ninepenny Kings, on side of Targaryens) - 3. Petyr's grandfather (hedge knight, that took supposedly the Titan's head as his sigil) - 4. Petyr's great grandfather (sellsword from Braavos) - 5. Petyr's great great grandfather (maybe the broken sword belonged to him, or rather was given to his son, after his father's death, and the head, that was later depicted on their family's sigil, was this man's head. Golden Company has tradition to cut off heads of their fallen generals. It started from death of Bittersteel. Though if they had to bring across the Narrow Sea, remnants of their fallen comrade, to give them to his family, then it's possible, that they brought only head, instead of taking entire body. It's easier to retrive a cut off head, from the battlefield, than to take from there an entire body. Also easier to transport. And there's that saying, often used in books and movies about warriors and battles, about either returning with victory and your shield, or to die in battle, and then the body will be brought back to that warrior's family, on top of his own shield. Which made me think, that either members of Golden Company, cut off head of their fallen comrade, and brought it back to Essos, either wrapped in some green cloth, that they picked up at battlefield, or on top of green shield. Either it was enemy's banner, or enemy's shield, that was green-colored, or it was this warrior's own shield).

That battle happened on Massey's Hook, in Crownlands. I went thru Houses of Crownlands, and their traditional colors and sigils:

  • Bar Emmon - leaping blue swordfish on fretty silver on white;
  • Buckwell - a rack of golden antlers on vair;
  • Celtigar - red crabs strewn on white;
  • Massey - a triple spiral - red, green and blue, on white;
  • Rosby - three red chevronels on ermine;
  • Rykker - two black warhammers crossed on a white saltire on blue;
  • Stokeworth - a white lamb holding a golden goblet on a green field;
  • Sunglass - seven golden seven-pointed stars in a ring on white;
  • Velaryon - a silver seahorse on sea green.

Out of all Crownland Houses, only House Stokeworth has lots of green on their sigil.

Then I went thru history of that House, and got an idea, that the Bastard of Harrenhal is son of Aegon IV and Jeyne Lothston (that was Aegon's bastard-daughter). Falena Stokeworth was married to Lucas Lothston, and he was named Lord of Harrenhal. So both Falena and Jeyne, at certain time lived at Harrenhal. Apparently Jeyne's son was the Bastard of Harrenhal, that lost to Ser Arlan in 193. During that melee at King's Landing, Ser Arlan also defeated Lord Stokeworth. This Lord Stokeworth was probably Falena's great-nephew (she was born in 125, that tournament happened in 193, by that time, if she was still alive, she was 68, so her brother, the old Lord Stokeworth was already dead, or too old to be participating in tournaments, so Ser Arlan's opponent from Stokeworth House, was from different generation than Falena. So great-nephew seems to be right). Also if the Bastard of Harrenhal really was Jeyne's son, then during that tournament, Ser Arlan defeated both - Falena's great-nephew and her bastard-grandson. Arlan's opponents were cousins, that together took part in that tournament.

If this Bastard was son of Aegon IV, and he wanted to keep his parentage in secret, then he wasn't using as his sigil anything obviously Targaryen or dragon-related. And he probably wasn't going to use symbols of House Lothston, because Lord Lothston wasn't his real father. He could have used black bat from their sigil, because the bat could be symbol of Harrenhal, or sort of encrypted symbol of dragons. If Jeyne was half-Stokeworth and half-Targaryen, then her son could have used green background of Stokeworths, and something like a bat, that to other people will look like sigil of House Lothston, while actually it's a symbol of black dragon. So Bastard of Harrenhal was secret Targaryen bastard, and thus, when Daemon I Blackfyre and Bittersteel rebelled against Targaryens, he joined their ranks, fought with them during First Rebellion, and then escaped with Bittersteel to Essos, when later he joined Golden Company, and became one of their captain-generals, and his shield was green. His head was brought to his son, on this green shield, after he died during Fourth Rebellion.

And who is current Lord of Harrenhal? - Petyr Baelish. Isn't it fitting, that he became legitimate Lord of Harrenhal, while years ago, his great great grandfather was the Bastard of Harrenhal, and secret son of Aegon IV.

Edited by Megorova

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28 minutes ago, Megorova said:

"The device painted on the shield was one Sansa did not know; a grey stone head with fiery eyes, upon a light green field."

It doesn't seems right, to be depiction of the Titan. Sansa is an educated highborn, shouldn't she be able to recognize the Titan, if it was really him on that picture? Also if it's the Titan, then why does he have a fiery eyes? And why is it only the head, depicted on that shield? And also why is it on green background? If it's Titan's head, then shouldn't it be depicted on background of blue sky? So why the background is green? There's no greenery in Braavos. But even if there was, still the Titan's head is way higher than trees or grass, so it should be on font of sky, not something green. Unless sky in Braavos is green, and as far as I remember, it isn't. 

It is easy explain fiery eyes of Titan. From Arya's POV in AFfC:

Quote

The last of the night’s stars had vanished... all but the pair dead ahead. “It’s two stars now.”
“Two eyes,” said Denyo. “The Titan sees us.”

The Titan of Braavos. Old Nan had told them stories of the Titan back in Winterfell. He was a giant as tall as a mountain, and whenever Braavos stood in danger he would wake with fire in his eyes, his rocky limbs grinding and groaning as he waded out into the sea to smash the enemies. “The Braavosi feed him on the juicy pink flesh of little highborn girls,” Nan would end, and Sansa would give a stupid squeak. But Maester Luwin said the Titan was only a statue, and Old Nan’s stories were only stories.

and:

Quote

There, where Denyo pointed, a line of stony ridges rose sudden from the sea, their steep slopes covered with soldier pines and black spruce. But dead ahead the sea had broken through, and there above the open water the Titan towered, with his eyes blazing and his long green hair blowing in the wind.
His legs bestrode the gap, one foot planted on each mountain, his shoulders looming tall above the jagged crests. His legs were carved of solid stone, the same black granite as the sea monts on which he stood, though around his hips he wore an armored skirt of greenish bronze. His breastplate was bronze as well, and his head in his crested halfhelm. His blowing hair was made of hempen ropes dyed green, and huge fires burned in the caves that were his eyes.

Maybe green hair of Titan, greenish bronze and trees on stony ridge can explain green color in Baelish arms. Have no idea why Braavosi put effort to adore Titan with hempen hair and even dyed it green.  Maybe they tried depict some sea god? Even more interesting that head with green hair is a sigil of house Greyiron. Seems like image of Titan of Braavos and Greyiron sigil have the same origin. And maybe legendary Garth Greenhand also has something to do with it, because he is sometimes called Garth Greenhair.

Petyr Baelish changed his sigil, but kept green background (at least this is how his new sigil  is depicted in wikki), so maybe green color is meaningful to him, though I don't remember if he ever wears green.

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18 minutes ago, Pukisbaisals said:

so maybe green color is meaningful to him, though I don't remember if he ever wears green.

His eyes are gray-green. And his personal sigil is silver or gray mockingbird on green field.

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36 minutes ago, Megorova said:

His eyes are gray-green. And his personal sigil is silver or gray mockingbird on green field.

Interesting note: mockingbirds are brood parasites. They also "steal songs" from other birds. Given the mythic implications of the idea of a "song" in this story, it's difficult not to read into this choice of personal emblem.

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After re-reading information about Harrenhal, and which Houses ruled it, I got an idea, that maybe Petyr is partially Whent. He and Catelyn Tully are third cousins.

 

Falena Stokeworth married with Lucas Lothston. Most likely Falena's daughter, Jeyne Lothston, wasn't Luca's child. Her real father was Aegon IV. And later Aegon also took Jeyne as his mistress, and she gave birth to his son - the Bastard of Harrenhal. Probably Lucas Lothston didn't wanted this bastard-children to inherit Harrenhal.

Lucas had a son - Manfryd Lothston, known as Manfryd o' the Black Hood. Dunk mentioned Manfred Lothston, that sided with Daemon I Blackfyre, during First Rebellion of Blackfyres, but then betrayed him. So I think, that it's the same person - this traitor Manfred is Manfryd, son of Lucas Lothston, and thus uncle of the Bastard of Harrenhal.

Previously I wrote, that maybe Ser Arlan defeated two cousins, but seems, that his opponents were Lucas' son and his fake-grandson (uncle and nephew).

Harrenhal passed to Manfred/Manfryd. Eventually ruler of Harrenhal became Danelle Lothston, either wife of Manfryd, or his daughter, or some other relative.

The Whents were originally knights in the service of the Lothstons.

I see two options, how the Bastard of Harrenhal could be connected to them:

  1. Officially he was a bastard-son of Jeyne Lothston. Maybe he was son and grandson of Aegon IV. So he had royal blood, furthermore a King's blood. But he was still a bastard, thus not good enough to marry into main family of Lothstons, to some cousin, or other relative. Though he was good enough to be married to servants of Lothston family - the Whents.
  2. Other option, is that this Bastard of Harrenhal was the Whent. First Whent, and founder of this House.

In case of first option, the Bastard married with a Whent girl. In case of second option, the Bastard is a Whent, the first one, and later he married either with some girl from Westeros, or with some woman from Braavos, or both, and thus Petyr's great grandfather, is half-Whent half-Braavosi.

If he was born in 178-180, then during First Rebellion of Blackfyres, in 196, he was 16-18 years old. So probably not married yet, and not yet completely turned against Lothstons and Targaryens. Thus probably he didn't participated in First Rebellion (but his uncle Manfred did participated, and betrayed Blackfyres). He joined anti-Targaryen coalition years later. Could be, that he participated only in Second, Third, and Fourth Rebellions. I got this idea, based on banner of House Whent - three rows of black bats, two bats, three bats, and four bats, nine in total. Maybe it's an encrypted hint, that House Whent supported Blackfyres in three Rebellions, from 2 to 4.

During Second Rebellion of Blackfyres, Harrenhal was ruled by Danelle Lothston. If she was Lucas' granddaughter, then she was the Bastard's first cousin. During Second Rebellion, in 211, he was 31-33 years old. So probably already married, and already member of House Whent, either thru marriage with a Whent girl, or by founding House Whent.

Sometime during reign of Maekar I, the Bastard and his Whent family plotted against Lothstons, to take Harrenhal from them. I think, that they either poisoned Danelle, and she became mad, or they used against her dark arts, or those rumors about her practicing dark arts, drinking blood, and being a cannibal, was intentionally spread by the Bastard, while Danella was innocent. Eventually, with the blessing from Targaryens, Whents have defeated Lothstons, and Harrehnal was given to them. So the Bastard had wife and children, that lived at Harrenhal, and served to House Lothston, prior Whents took Harrenhal from Lothstons. Probably he always thought, that Harrenhal should belong to him.

At certain point in time he left 7K, and became affiliated with Blackfyres and Golden Company. Probably later he remarried in Braavos. Though at Harrenhal still lived his descendants from first marriage.

Wife of Hoster Tully was Minisa Whent. So she, and her Tully children are descendants from the Bastard's first marriage, while Petyr Baelish is descendant from the Bastard's second marriage, with a woman from Braavos. So Petyr and Cat were... third cousins? - if they had common great great grandfather?

Then, when Varys arrived to Westeros in 70's, he contacted both branches of Whent family - Petyr and his father, and Walter Whent, that at that time was Lord of Harrenhal. They all became agents of Blackfyres, and worked for Varys. During Second Rebellion of Blackfyres, they were using Tournament as cover for preparing Rebellion, and to gather their allies. The same thing was happening in 282, at Harrenhal, when they were preparing Sixth Rebellion of Blackfyres. Though Varys tricked King Aerys to think, that the one who is behind this plotting, is prince Rhaegar, while actually it was done by anti-Targaryen coalition. Though their plans were ruined by Robert's Rebellion.

Edited by Megorova

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